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Thread: Water shortage in southwestern U.S.

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  1. #1

    Default Water shortage in southwestern U.S.

    There is a water shortage in the southwestern United States. Lake Mead, the largest reservoir in the U.S. is expected to reach a record low water level today. Power production from hydroelectric is down 25% and may have to be shut off completely at some point (latest estimates say August) at Lake Mead. California is trucking small salmon from hatcheries to the ocean because the water is too warm in the streams and rivers for them to survive. Lake Oroville is having houseboats removed from the water and stored on land in a parking lot (at the owner's expense) to prevent damage from the boats bottoming out in the lake. There is a dam removal project along the Klamath River planned (the largest in U.S. history) to protect the salmon at the expense of a major water supply for California and Oregon as well as power from hydroelectric. I've already heard of some areas having a three strikes policy for water wasting where they will shut your water off for the year. By all appearances, we are looking at the possibility of a major water shortage, a food shortage (plants and animals need water too), a horrible wildfire season, and rolling blackouts (little to no hydroelectric power). Might be time to pray for rain.

    Does anyone have plans for riding these problems out, other than moving? Seems we need to have a decent supply of water on hand and preferably a well also. We need a bugout vehicle stocked with water, food, and supplies in case of a fire evacuation. Have plenty of lights and batteries to ride out rolling blackouts. This is the type of event that could cause a mass migration of desperate people if the water and electricity stop flowing. Worst case scenario, you might have to have security shifts on your property to watch out for people trying to take what you have, or bug out and abandon your home.

    We can discuss our plans for this situation, current conditions in our area now, news updates, and what is being done about it. I know scary things happen when the SHTF, but please no discussions about hurting trespassers, looting to survive, or anything your pastor wouldn't want to hear coming out of your mouth. Let's keep this in the realm of likely possibilities, not freak out over nightmarish worst case scenarios.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Water shortage in southwestern U.S.

    I live on a man made lake in gergia usa . i saw it at a record low then a record high it was crwzy to see.
    LED's have gotten too bright in our stuff. Many nights I'm awakened by my modem lights blinking.had help with my sig thank you for your help.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Water shortage in southwestern U.S.

    But the lawns look FABULOUS!!
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  4. #4

    Default Re: Water shortage in southwestern U.S.

    Quote Originally Posted by bykfixer View Post
    But the lawns look FABULOUS!!
    I had to laugh with this one.
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  5. #5
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    Default Re: Water shortage in southwestern U.S.

    This sounds really bad. Ultimately, if average rainfall doesn't start to increase, you may be looking at needing desalinization plants. As for planning, for starters people should stop watering their lawns, washing their cars, basically no longer use water for anything but drinking and personal hygiene.

    Wells aren't a long-term solution, either. In a few generations, perhaps even a few years, the wells will run dry when the water table is depleted. The US southwest may eventually face a mass migration of people elsewhere. I've said for a long time that California's problems stem mostly from too many people moving there over too short a time span. Ditto for a lot of the rest of the US south. It's not a great idea to settle in a place where you have to import water and you need A/C 6 to 9 months of the year.

  6. #6
    *Flashaholic* Lynx_Arc's Avatar
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    Default Re: Water shortage in southwestern U.S.

    We had a record heat wave about 10 years ago for 2 years and water rationing and the lakes and stuff were all down big time but now we are having more rain and back to normal maybe even a little more than usual. Around here we need AC about 7 to 8 months a year but we have water everywhere lakes and stuff Oklahoma is number 2 in both water categories... 2nd to Minnesota in the number of lakes and second to Michigan in the amount of water. We have a river running through the city here that on rare occasions floods as the dam upstream gets too much water coming from the north to it. Likely the weather there will return to normal after awhile but as it has here it could take many years and by that time there likely will be a lot of problems. They should get a solar powered desalinization plant there for sure maybe several of them. What concerns me is agriculature if there is less water to grow food prices of many things could go up a lot and when prices of some food goes up people can switch to other foods and drive those prices up.
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  7. #7
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    Default Re: Water shortage in southwestern U.S.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Arc View Post
    What concerns me is agriculature if there is less water to grow food prices of many things could go up a lot and when prices of some food goes up people can switch to other foods and drive those prices up.
    My concern as well. I could be flippant and say this doesn't affect me, I live in the NE, the reservoirs are at or near 100%. But in fact a water shortage anywhere we grow food is going to affect me in terms of higher food prices. Let's hope the weather returns to normal soon.

  8. #8
    *Flashaholic* Poppy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Water shortage in southwestern U.S.

    I know very little on the subject, but I think for years they have been using more water than has been supplied by nature. They have been draining water from ancient aquifers and although they *may* get refilled with spring run-off from melting snow way up North, one of the problems is that as the aquifers drain, they sometimes collapse, which decreases their capacity to hold. Therefore part of the problem is they are decreasing their reserve capacity. At the same time, more people continue to move in, and consume more water.

    Pouring water onto desert sands to make for a green lawn, is wasteful, at the least. Also, those who moved to that area of the country to get away from some seasonal allergies, now found that people from the East Coast have brought the plants (grasses) that produce the allergens. That seems unfair!

    The air is so dry, swamp coolers (evaporative coolers) are effective there. I assume they are cheaper to run than typical AC. They however do consume water.
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  9. #9
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    Default Water shortage in southwestern U.S.

    Itís time to treat water as essential. Globally, people in dry areas collect roof, mist and dew condensate in cisterns. Bermuda is a case in point. Every house, mall and office should collect roof water for toilet flushing and drinking treatment. I designed a 20,000 gallon system for a building in Goshen, NY that collects 30,000sf of roof water. Itís used for irrigation and toilets.

  10. #10
    *Flashaholic* Poppy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Water shortage in southwestern U.S.

    Quote Originally Posted by wweiss View Post
    Itís time to treat water as essential. Globally, people in dry areas collect roof, mist and dew condensate in cisterns. Bermuda is a case in point. Every house, mall and office should collect roof water for toilet flushing and drinking treatment. I designed a 20,000 gallon system for a building in Goshen, NY that collects 30,000sf of roof water. Itís used for irrigation and toilets.
    Orange County New York gets an average of 47 inches a year.
    Bermuda gets an average of 55 inches a year.
    Southwest Arizona gets an average of 4 inches a year. Roof top collecting isn't going to help much there.
    Last edited by Poppy; 06-10-2021 at 03:13 PM.
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